Brier Terrace 8th grader to dance lead role in ‘A Storybook Nutcracker’ Dec. 13-14

Eighth grader Kristina Balayants is dancing the role of Clara in Alderwood Dance Spectrum’s “A Storybook Nutcracker.” (Photo by Brian Carlson)

Eighth grader Kristina Balayants has been dancing in “A Storybook Nutcracker” since she was a little pig-tailed Bon Bon hiding under Mother Ginger’s skirt seven years ago.

The Brier Terrace Middle School student is dancing the lead role of Clara this year in Alderwood Dance Spectrum’s annual production. She has enjoyed the challenge. “There are more lifts. I’m learning different techniques,” she said.

“A Storybook Nutcracker” is a shorter version of the Nutcracker. It uses brief narration to bring the Nutcracker story to life for younger audiences. There are three public performances of the show: Friday, Dec. 13 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, Dec. 14 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the Snohomish PUD Auditorium in Everett, 2320 California Ave.

With more than 50 dancers, this production is fully staged, with falling snow, beautiful costumes, colorful scenery and your favorite songs and dances.

Joining Balayants in the cast this year are: Aidan Stanciu as her brother Fritz, Alexis Ballard as the Sugar Plum Fairy, David Aldridge as Nutcracker Prince, Michael Creeden as Herr Drosselmeier and Chuck Dungan as the comical Mouse King.

Audience members are greeted as guests and invited to the Stahlbaum family Christmas party. Following the performance, guests can meet the cast, in character, for photos.

Tickets are $20 and can be ordered online at For more information, call Alderwood Dance Spectrum in Lynnwood at 425-771-2994.

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